The FINANCIAL -- On November 26 Caucasus University, one of the leading higher education institutions in Georgia and the European Public Law Centre began implementation of the project “KOMNINOI” - Modernization of Georgia’s legislation and the training of civil servants and judges. The project is funded by the Department of International Development Cooperation (Hellenic Aid) of the Hellenic Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Implementation of the project includes three day seminars for the employees of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia.
“A big transformation of the culture, and civil servants taking more responsibility for what they are doing, is necessary for countries that are trying to get closer to the European Union. I hope this project will contribute to the gradually changing culture that is no doubt evident in Georgia,” said John Hills, Personal Consultant for the European Public Sector and International Business.
“This progression has already started and is well underway in Georgia but it’s a very long process and requires a complete break from the past. Exposure to the thinking of other people, other cultures, is essential. From our point of view it’s very interesting to have feedback from the audience, since we are far from trying to impose what we have to say. We are trying to do everything in the spirit of cooperation and partnership, which makes this very much a two-way process. The results are something to look forward to in the long run.”
The seminars will be concerning subjects such as Development Administration Management, International Institutional Law, International Human Rights Law, Quality/Performance Management, International Law and Armed Conflict, and Legal Aspects of International Security.
“When you are doing this type of project, you have to realize that the people you are talking to are extremely well-educated and extremely cultured and yet may not be familiar with the journey ahead of them to European accession. You have to make sure that you don’t patronize or make people feel that the European way is the only way of doing things, you have to rightly develop a spirit of cooperation,” said Hills.
Selected by the European Public Law Centre, the professors giving lectures for the seminars are representing various European Universities.
The project aims at providing support to the review and modernization of Georgian legislation as well as training of the members of the administrative and judicial bodies of the Georgian government. More specifically, the project’s objectives include approximation of the Georgian legislation to the acquis communautaire - European Union Law, the proposal of legislative reforms, the further development of relations between the Georgian public bodies with those of EU Member States, as well as the improvement of the knowledge and skills of Georgian civil servants, the amelioration of decision-making and the combating of corruption.
“We initially had contact with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Justice of Georgia and they gave us a list of topics that they thought needed modernizing and updating. According to this request we provided the appropriate speakers, knowledgeable in these particular spheres, who are willing to share their particular knowledge,” said Vasileios Anastasopoulos, Associate Researcher and the Project Manager from the European Public Law Centre.
“We feel very privileged to be here contributing to this educational program. Coming to Tbilisi and speaking to a high-level audience of civil servants doesn’t mean that we feel we are more educated in something they don’t know. We would rather like to expose our own expertise and exchange ideas or elaborate on certain things that they would like to be more informed about or acquire more specific knowledge about,” said Vassilios E. Grammatikas, Lecturer at Thracian University. “Cooperation is essential for this program to be fulfilled as successfully as possible. We certainly hope that this will be an interactive process profitable for everyone participating in the conference.”